Lake Pukaki Overnight Campervan...

Lake Pukaki Overnight Campervan Parking

Reviews

Get the best out of it. Here's how…

Suzanne's avatar

Suzanne

Ranking: 9/10

Great location although the night we were there it was windy so hid behind the trees. We could still enjoy the sunset by walking to a vantage spot.
Long drop toilets are new but a bit smelly the next morning.

Reviewed 4 months ago

Tash and Liam's avatar

Tash and Liam

Ranking: 8/10

Wonderful free little camping area just away from. The roadside. The only negative here are the toilets were in unbearable state with no ventilation. The view of the lake is incredible though!

Reviewed 6 months ago

Valg's avatar

Valg

Ranking: 10/10

This is a large picturesque area with many places to choose from Excellent toilets. Pukaki is so beautiful with views of Mt Cook at the end on a clear day . We were very disappointed not to stay the night as the wind was horrendous and we had to move on.We will return !

Reviewed 7 months ago

Maree's avatar

Maree

Ranking: 10/10

Right on the lakefront of Lake Pukaki looking up to Aoraki . Be sure to get there early to secure a good spot , take a dip in the lake and watch the sunset. 4 clean long drop toilets available but a bit of a hike from the good campspots .

Reviewed 7 months ago

Pablo Boris's avatar

Pablo Boris

Ranking: 10/10

Great place and amazing views!! By far, the best place so far, bathrooms just ok.
But the view is just great, lots of places and so great that we didnt have sandflies. A spot in the middle between Tekapo and Mt Cook.
Highly recommended, check the weather, the best thing is to cook outside with the view of the Alps! Sandflies level: 1 (jan 2021)

Reviewed 8 months ago

Felix's avatar

Felix

Ranking: 10/10

Great free camp with views across Lake Pukaki to Aoraki in the distance. Clean toilets and a nice spot to watch the sun set.

Reviewed 8 months ago

Kirsten's avatar

Kirsten

Ranking: 10/10

Great position with view to Mt Cook. The lake is right here and we swam along with others- warmer than other expected.
.
The toilets were new and clean. Long drop toilets are least smelly when a breeze comes up and moves the vents above the vents. We used our motorhome toilet and the long drops- combo effect.

We loved this spot! Family of 4.
Will come again.

Reviewed 8 months ago

Michelle's avatar

Michelle

Ranking: 10/10

Amazing views. Awesome place to stay.

Reviewed 10 months ago

Ying's avatar

Ying

Ranking: 10/10

We stayed here twice in Sep and Nov 2020 and it was one of our favourite freedom camping sites. Great location on the lakefront and several large, clean toilets (though they are a bit of a hike from the furthest carpark). You'll have to arrive by early/mid afternoon to get a good spot.

Reviewed 10 months ago

Jim Henderson's avatar

Jim Henderson

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

Great location. Lots of construction going on at present, so a bit noisy. In all fairness, their listing indicated this and we knew it going in. Nice, level powered site overlooking the lake. Very clean facilities - showers, toilet and communal kitchen. Nice bbq grills outside. About a 20 min. walk back into town and the Church of the Good Shepard. Fantastic cafe in town - Greedy Cow. Had a top notch croque madame and coffee for brekkie.

Reviewed 11 months ago

Mel's avatar

Mel

Ranking: 10/10

Fantastic spot. Gorgeous view of lake. Well sign posted.

Reviewed 12 months ago

Daniel's avatar

Daniel

Ranking: 10/10

Amazing spot overlooking lake Pukaki down towards Aoraki. Is a large area with lots of space great place to stay before heading to Mt Cook.

Reviewed 12 months ago

JS's avatar

JS

Ranking: 10/10

The highlight of our 10day trip.. Most incredible spot, amazing views of the lake and the Mt Cook National park. Sunrise and sunset were spectacular, with some sweet sweet Night sky viewing.

Reviewed about 1 year ago

Cape Crusaders's avatar

Cape Crusaders

Ranking: 10/10

Beautiful Spot! Totally recommend. HUGE area, drive all the way around, is kind of 3 tiered with gravel parking. 4 dunnys avail, bit stinky. We woke up to sunshine views of Mt cook, vibrant blue Pukaki. BBQ breky wraps and skimmed rocks on the lake first thing, was perfect! Thouroughly loved it here 👌

Cape Reinga to Bluff

Reviewed about 1 year ago

Joey's avatar

Joey

Ranking: 10/10

Our favorite place! Gorgeous view of the lake and mt cook. Tons of space for campervans, but not all level or with an unobstructed view. Drop toilets smelly but clean enough, hand sanitizer provided.

Reviewed over 1 year ago

Ju's avatar

Ju

Ranking: 10/10

My best memory of all the camps we’ve done! And for free!!! What a feeling of freedom in this beautiful scenery!!! Toilets are basic and stinky but the scenery makes it up for it. And at no cost you can only appreciate the beauty around you. At dusk or sunset it becomes magical !!!
Ps: we arrived around 5pm was already very full. Some vans left later on as I guess some are just spending the day here.

Reviewed over 1 year ago

Jana's avatar

Jana

Ranking: 9/10

A beautiful spot for freedom camping. Stunning views and loads of space. The toilets are dirty but ok if you have self-contained car so you don’t have to deal with it :) one of the best free campsites we stayed in last two weeks

Reviewed over 1 year ago

Drew's avatar

Drew

Ranking: 10/10

Best view I’ve seen on a freedom camp, can have a swim in the water and Mt Cook is overlooking the beautiful blue lake. Toilets are drop toilets 4 of them. Heaps of space to camp on gravel

Reviewed over 1 year ago

Alvin's avatar

Alvin

Ranking: 10/10

Great camping site, big space and with lots of other campervans but plenty of spots for our favourite. Porta loos at the base of hill, very clean no smell however bring your own light in the dark of the night.
There are a further three tiered layer to the entire camping space. Campervan spots at the top of hill overlook towards Mt Cook and is the most scenic

Reviewed over 1 year ago

Dani's avatar

Dani

Ranking: 9/10

Amazing Spot to sleep..beautiful view, nice stars...a little bit cowded and thw toilet is hard to use in the night without light, but the view is worth

Reviewed almost 2 years ago

Lisa's avatar

Lisa

Ranking: 9/10

sehr kalt und teilweise windig, aber wunderschön. liebe Camper, bitte nicht immer so nah an die Nachbarn stellen. es ist mehr als genug Platz für alle.

Reviewed almost 2 years ago

kay's avatar

kay

Ranking: 8/10

campsite with great view and it's free !!

Reviewed almost 2 years ago

Ambs's avatar

Ambs

Ranking: 9/10

Such a great spot right on Lake Pukaki. It depends which area you park, you may have to walk to the toilets but it’s not far. Toilets smelled fine during the day, but at night pwoooaaa. Nasty. Keep the lids closed ppl.
If it wasn’t raining I’m sure the views of the mountains and stars would’ve been incredible. Oh well, hopefully next time :)

Reviewed almost 2 years ago

Katherine Ong's avatar

Katherine Ong

New Zealand

Ranking: 9/10

Amazing views and it’s free. Loads of space available for campervans. Four toilets but long drops (but well maintained). Mt cook alpine salmon just round the corner at the lake pukaki visitor centre - still premium pricing but smoked salmon pate is lovely!

Reviewed almost 2 years ago

Kate's avatar

Kate

Ranking: 10/10

Arrived at 4:30 just in time to set up, relax and catch the sunset. 100% recommend to spend the night here heaps of space however the ground is quite uneven and sits on a tad of a slope but so worth it for the afternoon view. Toilets are available but were a bit of a walk from the top area.

Reviewed about 2 years ago

Mads Mossin's avatar

Mads Mossin

Ranking: 10/10

One of the best Places on earth.
You can park All along the Lake side. Much Better than by the Main place!

Reviewed about 2 years ago and experienced in March 2019

Ah Beng's avatar

Ah Beng

Ranking: 9/10

Amazing place, they have drop down toilets here

Reviewed about 2 years ago

Kristyl's avatar

Kristyl

Ranking: 8/10

Beautiful views but uneven grounds. There are NO signs that say dogs are not allowed. They loved the walk around the lake.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Kristyl's avatar

Kristyl

Ranking: 8/10

Beautiful views but uneven grounds. There are NO signs that say dogs are not allowed. They loved the walk around the lake.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Kristal's avatar

Kristal

Ranking: 9/10

Heaps of space, AMAZING views. Toilets are super smelly tho 🙄

Reviewed over 2 years ago

El and Josh's avatar

El and Josh

Ranking: 9/10

Absolutely breathtaking view! The site is massive and could accommodate a lot of campers, but even in the middle of winter it was pretty busy!
The stars are amazing, better than in Tekapo!
There is absolutely no shops or anything so go prepared. The toilets are fine, some stalls are better than other.

Only real downside of our experience was another camper who decided to poo directly in front of the camp on the shore, which was about 30m from the toilets? Clean up your act guys.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Kieron's avatar

Kieron

Ranking: 8/10

Loads of room to park up with stunning views over the lake
Standard drop toilets on site which smelt like the plague
But self contained vans wouldn't have to suffer it!
But it's free so no complaints

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Love Papamoa.'s avatar

Love Papamoa.

Ranking: 9/10

This was one of the best places for freedom camping. Lots of space and glorious views. Thank you to who ever made this happen.

Reviewed over 2 years ago and experienced in March 2019

Kipnkeri's avatar

Kipnkeri

Ranking: 5/10

Outstanding sunset and lots of fodder for am photography. Great camp vibe. Lots of campers of all types but also plenty of space and options. Potential to be v windy with no sheltered options. Toilet was the worst we have ever encountered hence mid range rating.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Taylor's avatar

Taylor

Ranking: 9/10

This site was our favourite so far. Beautiful views of the lake and plenty of room. We arrived at around 4pm and were able to secure a spot with a clear lake view. Definitely a must if you’re wanting to stay in the area!

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Cris's avatar

Cris

Ranking: 10/10

Stunning place! We went during holidays (28/12/18). Big camping, good toilets. Totally recommended.

Reviewed over 2 years ago and experienced in December 2018

Apichaya Srimaneemongkon's avatar

Apichaya Srimaneemongkon

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

Fantastic view 10/10
Accessible 10/10
Free charge 10/10

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Rebecca's avatar

Rebecca

Ranking: 9/10

Great place to spend the night. Lots of space and nice views of the lake! Amazing stargazing after dark. Toilets smell horrible and if you're in their for longer than a minute the smell is stuck on you for the rest of the night.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Rick’d's avatar

Rick’d

Ranking: 9/10

Lots of vans but plenty of room at this time of year. Didn’t use the toilets so no comment there. But what views!!!

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Stefan Miedzinski's avatar

Stefan Miedzinski

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

Nice place with beautiful few on day and night.
Enough Space. Was quite cold when we got there.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Vicki Hoskinson's avatar

Vicki Hoskinson

Australia

Ranking: 10/10

Breathtaking, so quiet and beautiful. We were in our self contained camper so all was good

Reviewed over 2 years ago

kim thomas's avatar

kim thomas

United States

Ranking: 10/10

Busy spot, we rolled in around 5pm and still found a great spot up top. Beach access, clean, quiet. One of our best sites unpaid and payed. Did appear to be many tent campers, but we were self contained so didnt go looking for a toliet.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Sunseeker's avatar

Sunseeker

Ranking: 4/10

4 f*cks sake backpackers, STOP leaving toilet paper / wet wipes around. You would not be allowed to do it in your own country so why do it in NZ ? YOU are leaving filth everywhere. Soon we will not be welcome in NZ. STOP being filthy b*stars.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Aisling's avatar

Aisling

Ranking: 9/10

Great campsite with incredible views! Rooms for so many campers and tents. There was about 100 cars when we stayed and there was plenty of room for more. No fresh water but there are 3 drop toilets that were clean with toilet paper and hand sanitizer in them. Would definitely stay here again!

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Pedro's avatar

Pedro

Ranking: 9/10

Incredible place, really beautiful! We arrived a little bit late, by 8 pm, and all thought there was almost full we get a place to stay. Toilets are really clean.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Iggy's avatar

Iggy

Ranking: 9/10

Great free camping with toilets. Stunning lake and mountains views!
Upper part is more windy but offers better views.
If you come towards evening you will have limmited choice anyway as it is very popular, although this is spacious ground so is still tranquil.
Toilets get very smelly the more are used...
No running water.
Limitted spots for tents - best places on small hill covered with trees closer to entrance and toilets.
We enjoyed our stay very much.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Kosala Perera's avatar

Kosala Perera

Australia

Ranking: 8/10

We were actually camping at the Glentanner holiday park in mount cook, and only visited this site to gaze at the stars and take a few night photographs of the sky. The location is amazing with a great view of the lake pukaki and an amazing night sky. However, the camp site does get very busy (being free) and you may need to get here quite early if you want to catch a good spot. I believe there are some toilets here but no showers or any other kitchen/ dining area facilities.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Sophie's avatar

Sophie

Ranking: 10/10

Was amazing view, heaps of places to park a van or even tent. Loved every minute of it.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Marinette Kegels's avatar

Marinette Kegels

Ranking: 6/10

Beautiful spot but overcrowded. A lot of non self contained cars. No control 🥴 I’ve been here 2 years ago, it was much better. I have the feeling NZ “self contained rules” are “slacking down” and this is certainly not ok. Tourism is increasing.... rules are not followed.
I see a big difference and a bad evolution.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Tim's avatar

Tim

Ranking: 9/10

105 vans here tonight on 3 levels and still room for more. Awesome views of Mount Cook and clear night for star gazing

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Elian Lefebvre's avatar

Elian Lefebvre

Australia

Ranking: 9/10

Fantastic views and hence gets very busy

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Jackie Sue's avatar

Jackie Sue

Ranking: 9/10

Most stunning view across the lake to Mt Cook. Cleanest most modern long drop toilets ever. Three areas to park. We counted 107 vehicles of all shapes and sizes on the night of 4 Jan 2018. Also a handful of pup tents. Surprisingly quiet and peaceful at night, even with that many people. We heard so many different languages been spoken. Felt like a great community for one night. Don't arrive too late during peak season as it will get harder to find a nice spot. We arrived at 2pm and it there were already about 45 vehicles there. The hand sanitiser in the toilets ran out.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Jacqui's avatar

Jacqui

Ranking: 10/10

Absolutely fabulous free site
Amazing views of Mt.Cook and lake.
Plenty of spaces available on 3 different areas of same site . Room for big campers. We arrived 830pm and still plenty of spaces available. Lakeside spaces. Pine tree forest by lake for shady spots.
4 clean drop toilets with toilet paper and alcohol gel dispensers (Unfortunately empty when we visited) disabled access too.
Honesty box by loos to contribute but not obligatory.
Would definitely stay again and highly recommend. Beautiful spot. Can’t believe it’s free. Thank you NZ 🥰
Jacqui UK

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Dan's avatar

Dan

Ranking: 9/10

Free! The views are amazing and there is tons of space. We had to move away from a group that was partying so gave up a beautiful flat spot we found early for one that wasn't level but was quiet. Location is great, good place for a break.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Martin's avatar

Martin

Ranking: 9/10

Incredible views of the lake and mountains. Loads of space...would be a 10/10 if it weren't so packed. But can park in the corners for more privacy. Hands down best/cleanest drop toilets we've ever used!!

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Ymke Huisman's avatar

Ymke Huisman

Ranking: 10/10

Wow. Most beautiful spot we had. Gets very busy. 4 toilets.

Reviewed over 2 years ago

Raphaele's avatar

Raphaele

Ranking: 10/10

One of our favorite spots on the south island. Close to the highway but very sheltered from the road. Overlooking the lake and My. Cook, a perfect place for a scenic and refreshing swim. Brilliant night sky. Coming early for a good spot is a must as it gets overcrowded towards the late afternoon. 4 new long drops which were very clean but of course began to smell in the evening as so many people were using them.

Reviewed almost 3 years ago

Anwang's avatar

Anwang

Ranking: 10/10

Wow, what a place to wake up in the morning! Great views over the lake and the mountains behind it. Gets quite busy, so to have a good spot come relatively early.

Reviewed almost 3 years ago

Avoid Camping Fines!

Each camping location is approved by a regional council in NZ. So if it shows on the map, you’re allowed to stay.

The Rankers Camping NZ app, is also in association with…

Thematthew's avatar

Thematthew

Ranking: 8/10

Lovely location just a short distance from Twizel. Nice views, and four clean toilets. Very busy with vans.

Reviewed almost 3 years ago

Meagan's avatar

Meagan

Ranking: 10/10

Really great campsite, it was very busy in November but plenty of space and you didn’t feel crowded at all. Looks like brand new toilet facilities (drop toilets) kept in great condition, hand sanitiser provided. Breathtaking views of Lake Pukaki, if you freedom camp anywhere it needs to be this place! Can’t believe this place is FREE!

Reviewed almost 3 years ago

Matt's avatar

Matt

Ranking: 10/10

Beautiful view over lake pukaki. The lake mirrors the mountain range behind. New and clean drop toilets with hand sanitiser. Plenty of parking areas for vehicles. Does get busy though so get there fairly early to get a good spot

Reviewed almost 3 years ago

Scooper's avatar

Scooper

Ranking: 10/10

Do you want to free camp in one of the most amazing locations in NZ? Then this is a no-brainer, you must stop here. Stunning, spectacular, sensational view. Very large space so lots of vans can stay the night. Not all areas flat but plenty to choose from, just get there early. This was our favourite camping spot, no contest. The photos we took there of Mount Cook reflected in the lake as the sun was setting bring the same response from everyone we show... WOW! Recommend you see it for yourself.

Reviewed almost 3 years ago and experienced in September 2018

Mike Fricker's avatar

Mike Fricker

Ranking: 9/10

28Oct18. We were not sure where it was so just pulled off the road en spec. There are no signs there at all. However it was ok. The area we were on didn’t have much in the way of level areas but it was ok. Poor weather so views not as good as they could otherwise be.
No toilets where we were or in sight so we just went down to the info site and shop where the toilets are very good. No overnight parking there.

Reviewed almost 3 years ago

helen reeve's avatar

helen reeve

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

One of the best views ever at a camping spot, it was stunning. Lots of other campers there too but there are plenty of spaces

Reviewed almost 3 years ago

Shay Klimo's avatar

Shay Klimo

Ranking: 10/10

One of our favourite NZ campsites. Plenty of spots in all 3 areas- by the pine trees and toilet block (4 pretty good toilets), a bit up the hill there are a few more spots or right up the hill there are many. We tried all 3 on different trips past and love all areas.
To stay out of the wind by the toilet block is the best. For the views, a spot on the hill is stunning.

Reviewed almost 3 years ago

Tamara & Brittany 's avatar

Tamara & Brittany

Ranking: 8/10

Absolutely amazing views to wake up to! Busy campsight, but otherwise fine. Great idea to have hand sanitiser in the toilets.

Reviewed almost 3 years ago

Philip Page's avatar

Philip Page

Australia

Ranking: 10/10

Great place, loads of space, drop toilets good, views to die for!

Reviewed almost 3 years ago

Kimberly's avatar

Kimberly

Ranking: 10/10

Amazing campsite with unbeatable views. So much space you will always find a spot. It will get busy but you’ll always find an amazing view! Toilets are fine. It’s free! No complaints.

Reviewed almost 3 years ago

Sue's avatar

Sue

Ranking: 10/10

By far my favourite free spot of our whole South Island trip! The views were worth the uneven ground. Stunning sunset! Very new clean toilets.

Reviewed about 3 years ago

Kiri Edwards 's avatar

Kiri Edwards

Ranking: 7/10

Good large site near road. Was quite hilly however, but had beautiful views of lake and mountains. Felt safe as there were quite a few other campers around.

Reviewed about 3 years ago

James Richmond's avatar

James Richmond

Australia

Ranking: 9/10

Easy to find
Certainly has changed since our last visits 2 years ago and 12 years
Lots of new fencing and couldn’t stay where we did previously
Great still and highly recommended
The word has got around and probably 15 vans overnight
We stayed on top of the hill and had great views
Lots of work going on around the entrance??????

Reviewed about 3 years ago

Louis's avatar

Louis

Ranking: 9/10

The site have two entrance. One goes directly towards the toilet area which is on a lower ground. The other goes up to a hill, which I will recommend to stay the night. As this area seems to be still within the dark sky area of Tekapo as well. The stars during a clear night is awesome. It can be really cold and any puddle of water can actually freeze up.

Reviewed about 3 years ago

WeiQiang Ng's avatar

WeiQiang Ng

Singapore

Ranking: 8/10

Beautiful scenery and lots of spot to choose.
Can be very very windy at night but a beautiful and stunning view of the mountains are waiting in the morning.

Reviewed over 3 years ago

Raylene Harvey's avatar

Raylene Harvey

United States

Ranking: 10/10

What a beautiful location. Lots of space but it did get crowded later in the evening. Can’t comment on the toilets as we are in a self contained unit.

Reviewed over 3 years ago

Cefa's avatar

Cefa

Ranking: 9/10

This spot is a Jem, and a highlight of our resent South Island Trip. The views are spectacular, even the night sky was awesome. Daughter took some amazing photo. Tip Dont leave it too late to get there for a prime spot. Toilets are a bit of hit and miss. But there are some at the Isite a few minutes down the road.

Reviewed over 3 years ago

Artem's avatar

Artem

Ranking: 10/10

Great place, nice view. Easy to find. Лучший бесплатный campsite за поездку!

Reviewed over 3 years ago

The Farrs 's avatar

The Farrs

Ranking: 9/10

Beautiful free space with PLENTY of parking spots, gorgeous views of Mt Cook across lake Pukaki, minimal bugs (no sand flies), and brand new long drop toilet block. Would stay again!

Reviewed over 3 years ago

David Palmer's avatar

David Palmer

Ranking: 8/10

Wonderful location. BUT newly installed toilets are filthy beyond belief. To call the people responsible for this pigs is an understatement. Ultimately it will be the end of a great facility.

Reviewed over 3 years ago

Nicolas's avatar

Nicolas

Ranking: 8/10

The place is all about the views. Super awesome view over the lake, but other than that the site is not really being taken care of, lots of holes, big rocks... easy to hit with the bottom of your van.
Huge space to park, pretty much anywhere you manage to fit your vehicle, will probably never be full.

There actually are toilets on site. They must been very recent according to other reviews saying that there wasn’t. Long drop and very dirty.

Reviewed over 3 years ago

Matthew Hall's avatar

Matthew Hall

Ranking: 10/10

Incredible spot overlooking the lake with Mount Cook in the distance. Hold on to your food as it does get windy! Fairly easy access to the lake for a dip too. No toilets on site but there are some for the morning a 2min drive down the road to the info/salmon site.

Reviewed over 3 years ago

Tay Dao Han's avatar

Tay Dao Han

Ranking: 8/10

A bit hard to find, but nonetheless, it provides for stunning views! Has an entrance of off road trail by the side of the expressway. We camped by the roundabout by accident, not realising that!

Reviewed almost 4 years ago

Geart-Jan Benedictus's avatar

Geart-Jan Benedictus

Ranking: 9/10

It is possible to camp here with a tent! We found a beautiful place between the trees with a view on the lake. Sunsets are Amazing! There is no toilet (nearest one is visitor centre other side of the lake) or taps, but the lake is perfect for a dip! At night the stars are beautiful. One of our favourite free campsites we've been on!

Reviewed almost 4 years ago

Howard Morris's avatar

Howard Morris

Ranking: 7/10

Excellent spot for overnight stop with amazing views of snow capped mountains over lake. Can get crowded so get in early and can be very windy so pick spot carefully.

Reviewed almost 4 years ago

Francesca Gallagher's avatar

Francesca Gallagher

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

Here in September. Road is a bit scratchy getting to the lakeside but overall worth it for the views!!!!!
You have to stay here if travelling through, it's awesome. Heaps of spots to park. No toilet but information centre down the road with toilet if desperate, Or use your portable! Lots of other campers. Bit of a bank on the side of the lake so don't fall off!

Reviewed almost 4 years ago

Gary Wu's avatar

Gary Wu

Australia

Ranking: 7/10

Only can put the score if the view in the morning has no fog. Difficult to find as there is no sign when we arrived after dark.

Reviewed about 4 years ago

Frederick Yott's avatar

Frederick Yott

Australia

Ranking: 9/10

Amazing free location, park right on the edge of the lake!!

Reviewed over 4 years ago and experienced in December 2016

Madi's avatar

Madi

Australia

Ranking: 9/10

Free location! Amazing. Has toilet but no paper. No sandflies.

Reviewed over 4 years ago and experienced in December 2016

Jair's avatar

Jair

Portugal

Ranking: 7/10

The place is very good but not easy to find. There is a toilet there but should be removed. Terrible - no one can count on it.

Reviewed over 4 years ago and experienced in December 2016

Leonie Westerhot's avatar

Leonie Westerhot

Netherlands

Ranking: 10/10

So glad we travelled further from (crowdy, touristic) Lake Tekapo to this stunning place. We stayed 2 nights at daytime, we were alone because everybody just stayed at night. You can swim in the lake!

Reviewed over 4 years ago and experienced in December 2016

Pedro Cordeiru's avatar

Pedro Cordeiru

France

Ranking: 10/10

Lots of different sites to chose from in what probably is the most amazing place you will ever camp in.

Reviewed over 4 years ago and experienced in November 2016

Ann Le's avatar

Ann Le

Ranking: 10/10

Easily the most incredible views you will ever get from a free campsite. There is plenty of space here so it didn't feel overcrowded despite there being plenty of vans here. Don't miss this place!

Reviewed over 4 years ago

Igor's avatar

Igor

Ranking: 8/10

Top view on lake and mountains. Must arrive not too late because it is a known spot.

Reviewed over 4 years ago

Cathy Mead's avatar

Cathy Mead

Ranking: 7/10

I would love to have given this site a higher ranking - the position certainly deserves it - but it is being ruined by campers in cars. As there are no facilities whatsoever these people wee & poo wherever they feel like - most seem to go for a swim in the morning so this end of the lake is to be avoided at all costs!
There are no signs saying 'freedom camping only' so these people can camp with impunity. On the night of our visit cars eventually outnumbered self-contained vehicles 2-1. There was no rowdiness, just a steady despoiling of the surroundings. What a shame, and what for the future?

Reviewed over 4 years ago

Victoria Strong's avatar

Victoria Strong

Ranking: 10/10

A really stunning spot on the edge of the lake. Loads of room. It filled up as the night went on. Some people had fires. No toilets or any facilities at all. Open land with a patch of trees further from the lake if shelter needed.

Reviewed over 4 years ago

Verena Fendt's avatar

Verena Fendt

Ranking: 9/10

Wonderful spot near the water. Public toilet pretty smelly (not the usual well thought-out earth closet as you'll find almost everywhere else:)), but better than no public toilet at all ;-) and the site and the view of Lake Pukaki and the surrounding mountains compensates definitely for that! Would always go back there again!

Reviewed almost 5 years ago

Jude Ong's avatar

Jude Ong

Singapore

Ranking: 10/10

Simply breathtaking. Slightly quieter spot available over at The Pines but the view here alone was worth having to share the space with 15 other campers around.

Reviewed almost 5 years ago

Greg MacFire's avatar

Greg MacFire

Ranking: 10/10

To go to bed and get up with a great view, go here. This free campsite wins because access is earth and stones. It moves a little but it is done well. There are actually two outhouses among trees in poor condition but it helps out. Things to do for free!

Reviewed almost 5 years ago

Julia Hamblyn's avatar

Julia Hamblyn

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

Best night we had... amazing views from this bluff over Pukaki to Aoraki/Mt Cook. Treated to an extraordinary view at dawn with misty mountains reflecting in the glass-like milky blue lake!! Clean campsite. Rocky road to get there but easy if done slowly in a campervan, and well worth it!!

Reviewed almost 5 years ago

Puneet Mishra's avatar

Puneet Mishra

India

Ranking: 10/10

As soon as we arrived we were greeted by a fantastic view of the lake. Soon after parking our camper van we got out chairs and had a cup of coffee. My younger son decided to go and take a chair on top of one of the rocks. He had a good view and overall he loved it.

Reviewed almost 5 years ago

Victoria Wells's avatar

Victoria Wells

Ranking: 10/10

Stunning! Go here! Plus public toilets!

Reviewed almost 5 years ago

Shaylene Noble's avatar

Shaylene Noble

Ranking: 10/10

Absolutely stunning. Little bit of a cold breeze but the view makes up for it. Toilets in the forest, so slightly creepy at night, but definitely worth stopping here for a night.

Reviewed almost 5 years ago

Romano Turco's avatar

Romano Turco

Ranking: 10/10

Great spot on the cliff. Sky cleared for a fantastic view of Mt. Cook across the lake. Perfect freedom camp.

Reviewed almost 5 years ago

Josie Gray's avatar

Josie Gray

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

Breathtaking. Absolutely loved waking up here. Felt so privilidged to have spent the night here.

Reviewed almost 6 years ago

Tones D's avatar

Tones D

Australia

Ranking: 9/10

We loved this spot!! It was a bit hard to find the entrance (there are 2 - the one closest to the visitor centre is less rocky) - but once you get in it is absolutely amazing!!! We travelled in July, and were 1 of just 3 vans there. Ideal spot for looking at the stars at night, and what an amazing view to wake up to in the morning!!

Reviewed about 5 years ago

Michael Menrath's avatar

Michael Menrath

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

Magnificent place with beautiful sunset and the water. Good spot to go to in the morning 1 hour to Hooker Valley track and use the underground parking lot above instead the DOC Campground extra. Those who do not come too late all can park in the first row.

Reviewed over 5 years ago

Estelle Daniel's avatar

Estelle Daniel

Australia

Ranking: 9/10

Beautiful free campsite on Lake Pukaki. The road is not so easy to find and drive slowly with a motorhome. A lot of wind during the night, some people even left the campsite. But the view at sunset/sunrise on the Lake and the snowy Mount Cook make you forget the small amount of sleep we got because of the wind.

Reviewed over 5 years ago

Volker Stroenisch's avatar

Volker Stroenisch

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

Great views to the lake, to Mt. Cook, Mt. Sefton and the others around. The colour of the lake is awesome and it was even quite warm for a swim. However, the score is valid only for self-contained vehicles (even if we saw no sign). There are many people sleeping in the car or tent and I wouldn't want to know how they handle their human needs... But I can not say that it looked dirty.

Reviewed over 5 years ago

Jakob Gerber's avatar

Jakob Gerber

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

Stunning view, difficult drive but all for free. Check it out!

Reviewed over 5 years ago

Mark Sercombe's avatar

Mark Sercombe

Ranking: 6/10

NOT sign posted at road & difficult to find after dark. As you travel to Tekapo, entry is the first & 2nd gravel roads on left after going over the Lake Pukaki spillway. It's a poorly graded drive so take it slow with larger campervans. Gets a 6 as it's free.

Reviewed over 5 years ago

Sam Brydon's avatar

Sam Brydon

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

Free camping doesn't get any better than this. We drove up the side of the lake for a while, trying to find the very best spot, which we eventually found, with views of Mount Cook, easy access to the lake. It was just breathtakingly beautiful.

Reviewed over 5 years ago

Jennifer Brown's avatar

Jennifer Brown

United States

Ranking: 10/10

This is where we spent our first night with our campervan and nothing else even came close! The view of Mt Cook is stunning (great sunset)! There are many spots and campers were spread out. It was a little windy but didn't bother us. There are some spots that require going over some more tough ground, but nothing our campervan couldn't handle!
BEST FREE SPOT FOR SURE!

Reviewed over 5 years ago

Suzanne Vermeulen's avatar

Suzanne Vermeulen

Netherlands

Ranking: 8/10

Spacious freedom campground with amazing views on lake Pukaki. We spotted one longdrop toilet amongst the trees but didn't use it. Difficult to find a flat spot and it can be very windy. But we returned 3 nights because the views are the best!

Reviewed almost 6 years ago

Shanae Andrews's avatar

Shanae Andrews

Ranking: 10/10

Came here at nighttime so couldn't see much, but what a beautiful view to wake up to! There were a few motor homes here but lots of parking spots.

Reviewed about 6 years ago

Yann Le Gac's avatar

Yann Le Gac

France

Ranking: 8/10

Great spot by the lake. Quite a number of people, but not an issue as the place is huge. Spent 1 night in May and it was wonderful to see Mt Cook at sunrise. Self contained only. It's a pity to see the number of people not respecting this. I was appalled to witness someone having slept in a car taking a wee in the morning besides his car.

Reviewed over 6 years ago

Julia's avatar

Julia

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

Amazing views of the lake and the mountains. Initially, we wanted to stay at "The Pines" a bit more in the north of the lake but there was no camping ground on the coordinates given (that was the only time that the coordinates did not match). But we think many reviews of "The Pines" also fit to this camping ground. There is also a privy in the woods - but not recommended.

Reviewed over 6 years ago

Svenja Trubenbach's avatar

Svenja Trubenbach

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

Wonderful view of the lake, quiet and clean.

Reviewed over 6 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Andreas Liebe's avatar

Andreas Liebe

Germany

Ranking: 8/10

Nice view, free, silence, near to road and Mt Cook, no swimming, drinking water available, no fires allowed.

Reviewed over 6 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Camping NZ App Icon

Camping NZ App

Every camping site on your iPhone™, iPad™ or Android™ phone or tablet. Avoid camping penalties using this council approved app. Featuring offline maps.

Download from the App Store Download Android app on Google Play

Niamh Duane's avatar

Niamh Duane

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

Perfect isolated location with views of Lake Pukaki and Mount Cook. Amazing stars at nighttime. Freedom camping at its best.

Reviewed over 6 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Hanna Liebe's avatar

Hanna Liebe

Germany

Ranking: 8/10

Nice view and water available.

Reviewed over 6 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Allyson Taylor's avatar

Allyson Taylor

Ranking: 9/10

A superb location, beautiful views of the lake and Mount Cook. Plenty of space to park even though there were several other vans. We have given 9 not 10 since there wasn't a toilet available whereas at other sites there was. A wonderful spot for our first night in the van in New Zealand.

Reviewed over 6 years ago

Manolis Pavlakis's avatar

Manolis Pavlakis

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

A wonderful place with a superb view of Mt Cook! This spot would get 10 of 10, if "The Pine" haven't been better.

Reviewed over 6 years ago

Sarah Good's avatar

Sarah Good

Australia

Ranking: 10/10

We turned left off the road immediately after the bridge near the Info centre and Salmon Farm. The track then extends a fair way around the lake, with plenty of room to park up and enjoy the stunning view across to Mount Cook. Beautiful!

Reviewed over 6 years ago

Sina Leidig's avatar

Sina Leidig

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

A great campsite, but not so easy to find. There is no sign telling you that it is a campsite. It's got lots of space and great views to Mount Cook and the lake.
There is a toilet, which is hidden in the little forest.
Many people who stayed there for the night.

Reviewed almost 7 years ago

Daniel Jarrett's avatar

Daniel Jarrett

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

Incredible that this camping spot is for free. Some of the best views of Mt. Cook you are ever likely to see. Stay up for sunset and get up for sunrise. Once in a lifetime.

Reviewed almost 7 years ago

Bill's avatar

Bill

Switzerland

Ranking: 10/10

Perfect spot and free!

Reviewed almost 7 years ago and experienced in February 2014

Calvin Becker's avatar

Calvin Becker

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

Stayed there for two nights, no amenities, but beautiful scenery with Lake Pukaki and Mount Cook at the horizon. FREE.

Reviewed almost 7 years ago and experienced in April 2014

isabel Zander's avatar

isabel Zander

Germany

Ranking: 9/10

Great, beautiful views and directly next to the lake. But no toilets.

Reviewed almost 7 years ago and experienced in April 2014

Caroline Hennache's avatar

Caroline Hennache

France

Ranking: 9/10

Really nice place to stay, the view is amazing. As we said, the best 'kitchen' or 'room' we have ever been.

Reviewed almost 7 years ago and experienced in April 2014

Helen Olsson's avatar

Helen Olsson

Sweden

Ranking: 7/10

Before the bridge (!). Free camping by the lake. A bit windy but beautiful water and near to toilets by the information centre.

Reviewed almost 7 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Igor's avatar

Igor

Sweden

Ranking: 7/10

Nice for overnight, toilets 3minutes away with a car at the i-Site.

Reviewed almost 7 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Claudia's avatar

Claudia

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

We stayed here with a non-selfcontained campervan because there are public toiletts. We wake up in the morning with a really beautiful view on Mt. Cook, awesome! the bussed with a lot of chinese people are a little bit disturbing but it is ok!

Reviewed almost 7 years ago and experienced in April 2014

kim's avatar

kim

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

Lovely views right by the lake and enough breeze to deter the sand flies .It was warm enough for an icy dip in September .Long drop is among the pines on the top of the hill.

Reviewed almost 7 years ago

Chris Wainman's avatar

Chris Wainman

United Kingdom

Ranking: 8/10

Perfect position for views toward Mt Cook from souther tip of lake. Good location. Would stay again.

Reviewed almost 7 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Linda Wainman's avatar

Linda Wainman

United Kingdom

Ranking: 9/10

No facilities, but spectacular views. Would stay again.

Reviewed almost 7 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Florent Bouillon's avatar

Florent Bouillon

Belgium

Ranking: 8/10

The view of the Lake Pukaki and the Mount Cook is very impressive. It is worth going, but there are no facilities.

Reviewed almost 7 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Simon Galpin's avatar

Simon Galpin

United Kingdom

Ranking: 9/10

Good wilderness site - one longdrop not recommended! Stunning views of Mt Cook next to amazing turquoise waters of the lake - so good we stayed two nights.

Reviewed almost 7 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Benoit Irissou's avatar

Benoit Irissou

France

Ranking: 8/10

Beautiful view, enough space for everybody: perfect! Water supply.

Reviewed almost 7 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Moley's avatar

Moley

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

Amazing freedom camping spot! Difficult to find if coming from christchurch direction so for future campers coming in that direction wait until u see the bridge and then there is a turning on urn right just before. Site was beautiful and lake pukaki is stunning especially at sunrise! This spot was a highlight of our trip!

Reviewed about 7 years ago

Jeroen Suijlang's avatar

Jeroen Suijlang

Netherlands

Ranking: 10/10

Awesome spot! Free, great view and loads of space, only down point was facilities were not great.

Reviewed about 7 years ago and experienced in March 2014

Iris Anette Berger's avatar

Iris Anette Berger

Norway

Ranking: 10/10

A beautiful, open spot close to the water. Nice to meet other campervans there as well. Information and public toilets close by. Very lovely.

Reviewed about 7 years ago and experienced in April 2014

Ane Didriksen's avatar

Ane Didriksen

Norway

Ranking: 9/10

Beautiful camping ground by the lake. Big area and it was free.

Reviewed about 7 years ago and experienced in April 2014

Shona MacDonald's avatar

Shona MacDonald

Norway

Ranking: 9/10

Really nice spot overlooking Lake Pukaki and Mount Cook. No toilets. Lots of other friendly campers.

Reviewed about 7 years ago and experienced in April 2014

Hadar's avatar

Hadar

Israel

Ranking: 9/10

Amazing views of the lake and Mount Cook. But the toilets were far from the parking ground.

Reviewed about 7 years ago and experienced in February 2014

Kath Tonkin's avatar

Kath Tonkin

New Zealand

Ranking: 8/10

A freedom site along the south shore of Lake Pukaki - secluded spots right on the waters edge and next to the Alps to Ocean Cycle Trail - stunning views of Aoraki.

Reviewed over 7 years ago and experienced in January 2014

Trish Saunders's avatar

Trish Saunders

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

Enjoy stunning, peaceful views. Free.

Reviewed over 7 years ago and experienced in January 2014

Lindsay Berquist's avatar

Lindsay Berquist

New Zealand

Ranking: 8/10

Just off the main road on left over the dam coming from south. A large free area with plenty parking places and awesome views of the lake, (and Mt Cook when there's no cloud). Longdrop toilet on the hill but rarely used. (smelly). Ideal for self containment

Reviewed over 7 years ago

Bjorn Van Mulders's avatar

Bjorn Van Mulders

Belgium

Ranking: 10/10

Beautiful view of Mt Cook and over Lake Pukaki.

Reviewed over 7 years ago and experienced in December 2013

celie Mcquair's avatar

celie Mcquair

France

Ranking: 10/10

The best place we slept. Very windy place, close to the lake, beautiful colours.

Reviewed over 7 years ago and experienced in December 2013

Tim J's avatar

Tim J

United Kingdom

Ranking: 9/10

One of our top 5 sites during our 6 week tour,,
No facilities - self-contained only, and just stay the one night,, about 15 camper in early December, easy enough to find, just follow the gravel track up into the trees beside the lake,
Remember to get up for the sunrise, :)
Thank you

Reviewed over 7 years ago

Simon Wagner's avatar

Simon Wagner

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

Wonderful view of mountains and lake. Not that difficult to find, but no signs.

Reviewed over 7 years ago

Helene & Peter's avatar

Helene & Peter

Belgium

Ranking: 8/10

Incredibly beautiful and spectacular views of the lake and the mountains. Best view of mount Cook we have had.
The campsite is free and spacious. What you get is the location and nothing else. Fires are allowed.
The short gravel trail/road to the site is quite bumpy and rocky.

Reviewed almost 8 years ago

Nigel & Annie Dale's avatar

Nigel & Annie Dale

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

Amazing views & free, it doesn't get much better! No facilities so must be self contained, seems many folk had fire pits going on previous nights. Site fills up early so don't leave it to last minute

Reviewed almost 8 years ago

Robin Hales's avatar

Robin Hales

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

The most amazing location to spend your fist night freedom camping. Not easy to find but when you do it's worth the hunt.

Reviewed almost 8 years ago

Jay Sorrell's avatar

Jay Sorrell

Australia

Ranking: 10/10

We have travelled the world and this is hands down the most beautiful place we have been. Had a great afternoon, and spent the night around a camp fire. Amazing

Reviewed almost 8 years ago

Steve Warren's avatar

Steve Warren

Australia

Ranking: 10/10

Take the only road on the Nth side of the lake. Then park up and enjoy. Never ever seen water this color before.
For our first night on a Honeymoon, all I can say is

Reviewed almost 8 years ago

Pokari's avatar

Pokari

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

Stunning views - great Free camping. No facilities - so only self contained. Not signposted so a little tricky to find - short road in pretty rough but fine if you go super slow.

Reviewed almost 8 years ago

Kiwix3's avatar

Kiwix3

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

Brilliant place for a night of self contained freedom camping. Really peaceful and so so beautiful! Defiantly stay here if you are heading to Mt Cook and you are self contained.

Reviewed almost 8 years ago

Team Kim&James's avatar

Team Kim&James

England

Ranking: 9/10

Wonderful location, stunning views of the lake and mountains. Free!

Reviewed about 8 years ago

ramy's avatar

ramy

United States

Ranking: 10/10

Very nice freedom campsite. Large open grassy sites in among the trees for self-contained vehicles. Camp in the open or under the trees. Your choice.

Reviewed about 8 years ago and experienced in April 2013

Christian Schumacher's avatar

Christian Schumacher

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

Very nice view of the stars in the night and the sea in the morning. No facilities - self-contained only.

Reviewed over 8 years ago and experienced in March 2013

Marco Schmidt's avatar

Marco Schmidt

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

Free camping ground with stunning views over the lake and Mount Cook, incredible night sky, site is well accessible.

Reviewed over 8 years ago and experienced in March 2013

Michael Heuer's avatar

Michael Heuer

Germany

Ranking: 8/10

Amazing view and panorama, lots of space, quiet and away off State Highway 8, you can swim in the lake.

Reviewed over 8 years ago and experienced in March 2013

Arno Leleu's avatar

Arno Leleu

France

Ranking: 9/10

We found this big camp place by the beautiful lakes of Pukaki (turquoise water and not so cold). Locals said we were okay to stay for free.

Reviewed over 8 years ago and experienced in February 2013

Mette, Bo, Viktor & Olivia Seligmann's avatar

Mette, Bo, Viktor & Olivia Seligmann

Denmark

Ranking: 10/10

The perfect place to enjoy Lake Pukaki incl. the view of Mt. Cook. It is a very popular spot, but it is also big enough for many campervans. Our kids enjoyed jumping around the big rocks on the beach.

Reviewed over 8 years ago

C'est_Tina's avatar

C'est_Tina

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

Nowhere it was so beautiful. Just incredible! This view in the morning. There we spent the first night in New Zealand.

Reviewed over 8 years ago

rich kiimmii's avatar

rich kiimmii

Australia

Ranking: 7/10

A sweet spot i'm sure when there isn't torrential rain and force 10 gales...didn't get a peak at Mt Cook through the cloud or rain but the location was spot on. Cooked a really good spag bol had a bottle of red, battened down the hatches and enjoyed the rocking sway of our wind battered van aaaaaarrrrrr

Reviewed over 8 years ago

Loesje's avatar

Loesje

Belgium

Ranking: 10/10

The moooooost beautiful campsite EVER! (and we've been in New Zealand for 10 months already).
Cheers

Reviewed over 8 years ago

mirimirik's avatar

mirimirik

New Zealand

Ranking: 10/10

This place was my favourite sleeping spot during out 2 weeks camping trip around SI. Couldn't find the toilet and water source mentioned in other reviews, but we had our own.

Amazing sunset, sunrise. Didn't want to leave! A must go place - even just for a few hours.

Reviewed over 8 years ago

phudgb's avatar

phudgb

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

By far our favourite campsite, we were so sad we could only stay for one night :( The views were just beyond belief.

You have to trust your sat nav though as it's not signposted, but there is a tap and long drop (that we found a bit too scary to use!) It would be so easy to misjudge the location to be a carpark on the road by the lake - this site is tucked away around the corner and so much nicer!

Reviewed almost 9 years ago

Rob Gill's avatar

Rob Gill

England

Ranking: 8/10

WC and the best view from a campervan ever!! (well at least first thing in the morning) first come first served.

Reviewed over 9 years ago and experienced in February 2012

Graeme's avatar

Graeme

New Zealand

Ranking: 8/10

A great spot to stop for the night beside the Lake. On a clear day Mt Cook can be seen at the head of the lake.

Reviewed over 9 years ago

Jesper Hassel's avatar

Jesper Hassel

Sweden

Ranking: 8/10

Awesome view of Mount Cook, able to swim in lake, very basic.

Reviewed over 10 years ago

Marg's avatar

Marg

Australia

Ranking: 8/10

Not actual campground but excellent surroundings.

Reviewed almost 11 years ago and experienced in March 2010

Ina's avatar

Ina

Germany

Ranking: 10/10

It is free, beautiful landscape.

Reviewed almost 11 years ago and experienced in March 2010

Victoria Slater's avatar

Victoria Slater

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

Lots of kiwi regular campers might kill us for revealing this - we spotted it off SH8 and it was one of the best camps of the whole trip - stunning views of Mt Cook, sunreise and sunset FREE!!

Reviewed over 11 years ago

Nicky and Andy Prescott's avatar

Nicky and Andy Prescott

United Kingdom

Ranking: 10/10

As for directions at the information centre as it's not signposted. It's free but has a spectacular view of the very blue lake with Mt Cook behind it.

Reviewed over 11 years ago